Sunday, 6 December 2009

Swiss Venuses: two park bronzes in Geneva

Christine Z II (1982) by Heinz Schwarz

On Friday morning, Agent Triple P and the lovely B were walking down from the Palais des Nations to the city centre for lunch. Taking a rather circuitous route we wandered through the Jardin Botanique where we came across this rather enigmatic figure by Swiss sculptor Heinz Schwarz. We have been unable to find out anything about him except for the fact that he was born in Thurgovie in 1920 and died in Geneva in 1994.

This piece, called Christine Z II, was sculpted in 1982. It seems typical of his style from the other pictures of his work I have found.

Clémentine (1974?)

There is another similar figure in a small park at the Place du Bourg-de-Four, in the old town, named Clémentine. It has been adopted as a symbol by an organisation helping abused women and children and every day they put a different flower in the girl's hand (according to B).

It doesn't really belong on this blog as it is innocent not erotic but we just thought it was a very fine piece.

A few hundred metres further on we came across this bronze and know even less about it. Sitting in the Parc Moynier (named after Gustave Moynier one of the original founders of the Red Cross) by the lakeside it is marked H Paquet and is, therefore, we assume by Henri Paquet (1898-1975) but we have also been unable to find out much about him either, other than the fact that he was Swiss too and was the husband of sculptress Ursula Malbin who is still working in Israel at the age of 92.

His unnamed sculpture is in complete contrast to Schwarz's haunted young girls. Despite her kneeling pose she gives the impression of a strong and powerful young woman. Perhaps she is on watch and waiting for something as she seems poised to spring into action. Her face is particularly well done and she has a look of real intelligence as well as beauty. A splendid piece which would look very well in Agent Triple P's garden!

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